J-K secretariat opens after 11 days | india | Hindustan Times
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J-K secretariat opens after 11 days

india Updated: Sep 19, 2014 13:29 IST
Toufiq Rashid
Toufiq Rashid
Hindustan Times
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The Jammu and Kashmir civil secretariat in Srinagar reopened on Thursday after being shut for 11 days after flood hit the Valley almost two weeks back.

According to officials the attendance in the offices remained thin as most employees are still stranded in flooded areas in the Valley.

The devastating floods which have killed over 200 in the Valley has left the government machinery completely paralysed.

Although flood water is beginning to recede in different places as government has breached the Jhelum at many strategic points, many areas, including around the civil secretariat, are still waterlogged. The ground floor of the secretariat is still not functional.

The Srinagar municipal corporation as well as hospitals have registered around 40 to 50% attendance. The SMC which is responsible for sanitation in the city has lost crucial records including the birth and death. "We have computerised record since 2010, but all the record before that has been lost,''said Bashir Ahmad, joint commissioner SMC.

The conservatory store house for brooms and other material essential for sanitation has also been destroyed.

"Our employees have tried to draw the packed items for use at this crucial hour,'' he says.

Out of 72 dewatering stations under the SMC, only eight are functional. "Rest of the pumping stations are deluged and will be functional after the water recedes,''he adds.

"We received four pumps for dewatering from the central government, but they did not have the suitable pipes which are awaited,'' Bashir says.

According to Bashir, sanitation is a major challenge."Out of the areas which have not been covered by water, we have cleaned 50% of the garbage, while the rest is still left out," he said.

The government is battling to prevent the waterborne diseases, like cholera from spreading, as fetid water swelled around the Kashmir Valley more than a week after the worst flooding in more than a century.

At a cabinet meeting on Monday, chaired by chief minister Omar Abdullah, it was decided that "no holidays shall be observed on Saturdays and Sundays in the state government offices in the Kashmir Valley, except educational institutions, till the closure of offices on account of Darbar Move,'' when the government shifts to winter capital Jammu.